Apr 12, 2010

Coalition lags on foreign affairs — and voters want to cosy with China

Despite recent events, many Australians actually want a closer relationship with China, the latest Essential Research polling shows. But they're not so keen on India.

Bernard Keane — Politics editor

Bernard Keane

Politics editor

Essential Research’s latest poll reveals some intriguing aspects of Australians’ attitudes toward foreign relations.

The Prime Minister scores strongly in terms of approval of his handling of foreign relations, with 50% approving and 32% disapproving, although the result tends to follow party lines. Labor also holds a strong lead (41-27%) over the Coalition in terms of who is trusted more on handling foreign affairs, with 22% saying no difference — suggesting the Howard Government’s strong record on foreign relations and national security has faded from memory.

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